reuse

You Can Grow Plants in Used Film Canisters

Houseplants and film photography have both seen renewed interest among younger people in recent years. Here's a neat way to combine these two loves: you can recycle used film canisters by turning them into tiny pots for plants.

This is How Fujifilm Recycled Disposable Cameras in 1998

What happens to used disposable cameras once the film has been processed and printed for customers? Well, oftentimes the camera company is able to get its hands on the discarded shell, load it up, and sell it to customers again. If you want to see exactly how this recycling process is/was done, check out the fascinating 15-minute video above, which shows how Fujifilm recycled and reused disposable cameras back in 1998.

Out with the Old: Three Ways You Can Put Your Old and Extra Gear to Good Use

The holidays are a great time for gift giving, which also normally means they're a time for cleaning out closets and camera bags. Every year, I find myself needing to get rid of old stuff that has been replaced; or dealing with the thoughtful but odd and/or useless gifts given to me by well-meaning family and friends.

But what to do with that redundant lens or knitted camera cozy? The simplest answer is to return or re-sell it, but sometimes there's no gift receipt to be found or the gizmo in question is too beaten up to be sold for any real value. Fortunately, there's plenty of ways to find a use for your used gear.

Turn Used Film Canisters Into Magnets for Your Fridge

If you still process your own film in a darkroom, you probably regularly toss empty film canisters into the trash can once you've popped off the cap and retrieved the film inside. The next time you're in there, try saving those canisters: you can upcycle them into neat magnets for displaying photos on your fridge -- perhaps even prints of latent photos that were once in those canisters!

Repurpose Empty Film Roll Canisters as Invitation Holders

If you've got spent, empty film cassettes lying around collecting dust, Photojojo has a crafty idea for the mindful re-user: make them into rolled invitation or stationery holders.

It's quite simple: cut and decorate 1.375″ x 11″ strip of paper, pop the top off the film cassette (you can use a bottle opener) and tape the inside end of the strip to the film spool. Wind the paper into the cassette and leave a tab for the recipient to unfurl the message.

Collapsible Hanging Bookshelf Made with Reused 35mm Film Strips

VU35 is a new brand by Lucas Desimone and Matias Resich that offers products created from wood and reused 35mm film -- a plastic material that's difficult to dispose of. Their first product is a minimalistic collapsible bookshelf called Filmantes, which uses strips of film to connect three wooden shelves.

Turn a Pringles Can into a DIY Snoot

If you have a potato chip tube lying around, you can convert the tube into a super simple DIY snoot. All you need to do is cut an opening in the closed end that's the size of your flash head (tip: use some duct tape to prevent it from scratching your flash).

Use the Front Element of a Broken Canon ‘Nifty Fifty’ Lens for Macro Shots

Canon's 50mm f/1.8 Mark II is a terrific lens for its price, but its build quality definitely leaves something to be desired. Do a quick search, and you'll find legions of broken-hearted Canonites who had their 'Nifty Fifty' split into two pieces after accidentally bumping or dropping it. Flickr user tastygiant is one such Canonite, but he subsequently discovered an awesome use for the broken lens:

Being a geek, I figured I could use the broken pieces in the future, so I shelved it and bought a new 50mm 1.8 Canon lens. One day, while taking shots around my apartment, I stumbled across the broken lens again and decided to reverse the "barrel assembly" onto the front of my intact 50mm. Everything was blurry of course, but I noticed if I got very close to an object the detail came into view. After adjusting the aperture to around f5.6, I had a clear image.
It's important to note that you should switch to Manual focusing and rotate the focusing ring to "infinity".

Geeky Film Canister Christmas Lights

Have a bunch of film canisters lying around and not sure what to do with them? You could use them to geekify your Christmas lights by punching a hole in the caps and sticking the lights in.